Case Studies

The State of California: Client since 1990

PRAG’s service to the State includes:

  • Advised on over $100 billion of general obligation bonds, lease revenue bonds and short-term revenue anticipation notes (RANs).
  • Identified and assisted in executing refundings that generated over $1.0 billion of savings.
  • Optimized debt structure of the $11.3 billion Department of Water Resources’ Power Supply Revenue Bonds.
  • Advised on over $14.0 billion of tobacco settlement bonds.
  • Optimized debt structure of the $11.3 billion Department of Water Resources’ Power Supply Revenue Bonds.
  • Developed Master Reserve for State lease financing program.
  • Designed and implemented long-term debt service projection model to calculate debt affordability.
  • Advised on over $15.8 billion BABs sold from April 2009 – November 2010, including inaugural $5.5 billion at the inception of the ARRA program.

Baltimore County: Client since 1985

PRAG’s service to the County includes:

  • Helped design and implement a long-term strategy, including a debt affordability study and debt and financial policies, to upgrade the County’s ratings to triple triple-A.
  • Advised on debt issues totaling over $5.3 billion.
  • Implemented the County’s first issue of uninsured auction rate securities, subsequently refunded by a commercial paper program which helped diversify the County’s variable rate program.
  • Developed a master lease program, private placement of note issues, sales of Qualified School Construction Bonds and of certificates of participation for equipment and for purchase and renovation of an office building for County use.

City of Los Angeles: Client since 1985

PRAG’s service to the City includes:

  • PRAG was the first overall financial advisor retained by The City of Los Angeles.
  • Advised on general obligation bonds, judgment obligation bands, sanitation equipment charge revenue bonds, parking system revenue bonds, wastewater bonds and tax and revenue anticipation notes.
  •  Developed financing plans for most of the major public investments undertaken by the City in the past decade, including the Staples Arena, the Los Angeles Convention and Exhibition Center and the Headquarters Hotel for the Convention Center.
  • Saved the City approximately $7.0 million annually by developing a new financing arrangement for its pension funding.
  • Also served as financial advisor to Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, the Los Angeles Department of Airports and the Los Angeles Harbor Department

The City of New York: Client since 1990

PRAG’s service to the City includes:

  • In 2013 alone, advised the City and TFA on 8 bond sales totaling $7.9 billion, including the City’s first public issue of Floating Rate Notes.
  • Advised on is the $1.2 billion Fiscal 2013 Series CDE Future Tax Secured Subordinate Bonds issued by the TFA in November 2012.
  • After Hurricane Sandy, implemented the competitive sale for TFA that included tax-exempt new money bonds, taxable new money bonds, Qualified School Construction Bonds, tax-exempt refunding and a tax-exempt conversion of variable rate bonds into fixed rate bonds.
  • Helped the City improve its credit ratings from –A to double–A by all three rating agencies.

Los Angeles Department of Water and Power: Client since 1993

PRAG’s service to the Department includes:

  • Advised on 66 issues totaling $16.8 billion in our 20+ year engagement.
  • Established a debt reduction trust fund with excess electric system revenues.
  • Developed a strategy to terminate an existing SPBA in order to restructure the annual bank credit asks to approximately $500 million per year.
  • Advised on competitively bid crossover refundings aggregating over $1.3 billion to level cash contributions on a fiscal year basis.
  • Developed a plan on Power System restructuring, saving an excess of $70.0 million.

Virginia Department of Transportation: Client since 1995

PRAG’s service to the Department includes:

  • Completed over $6.0 billion of financings including various transportation revenue bonds, GARVEES (direct and indirect) and public-private project financings.
  • Advised on the concession sale of the Pocahontas Parkway near Richmond in addition 11 public-private partnership projects.
  • U.S. Route 460 Corridor Improvements: currently advising VDOT and the Route 460 Funding Corporation on continuing disclosure for its toll revenue bonds issued through the Route 460 corporation.

Miami Dade County: Client since 2006

PRAG’s service to the County includes:

  • Completed a toll facility debt capacity analysis associated with the County’s participation in the $1.2 billion Miami Seaport Tunnel Project to assist with negations with the Florida Department of Transportation.
  • Debt capacity analysis for the Tunnel Project included: a review of the traffic demand study and associated revenue projections; determination of the financing parameters for a start-up toll revenue facility and the development of several financing scenarios based on varied revenue assumptions; examination of the impact of alternative debt structures.
  • Developed and implemented a review of the Miami-Dade Housing Agency’s Documentary Stamp Surtax Program which provides a funding source for affordable housing projects: reviewed policies, procedures, regulations, authorizing statutes, enabling ordinances and financial reports; analyzed the servicing process and loan repayment schedules for Surtax funded loans.
  • Analyzed the interface between (i) the Agency’s Surtax Program financial systems and servicing database and (ii) the County’s project approval process and County financial management system; created a historical cash flow model of Surtax Program revenues and disbursements and a base-line cash flow forecast based on Surtax Program practices; forecasted revenues and costs.
  • Prepared a report summarizing findings made pursuant to the operational and financial review; prepared a communications strategy for presenting the results of the review to key stakeholders.

New York State Thruway: The New Tappan Zee Bridge Project: Since 2011

PRAG’s service includes:

  • Advised on numerous types of financings for the New York State Thruway in addition to the New Tappan Zee Bridge.
  • Advised on 30 financings totaling over $14.0 billion for four bond programs
  • Contacted by the Governor’s Office, the Authority and the New York State Division of the Budget to assist with developing a model to help with the financial planning for the proposed Tappan Zee Bridge Project.
  • Developed a comprehensive financial model that shows the financial feasibility of the new bridge as well as the effect of new debt required to finance the bridge on the Authority’s overall finances and its ability to fund  future capital needs.
  • The model includes compliance testing for the Indenture’s additional bonds test and coverage tests for maintaining current ratings.
  • Used the financial model to show a variety of scenarios, based on differing costs of the bridge and levels of TIFIA support, alternative tolling regimes for the Tappan Zee Bridge and the rest of the Thruway system, and different assumptions about future operating costs, ongoing capital needs and additional debt to fund those needs.
  • In December 2013 a $1.6 billion TIFIA loan was approved for the replacement Tappan Zee Bridge.